Sports Mole brings you live commentary of today's Premier League clash between Manchester City and Arsenal at the Etihad.
Good afternoon and welcome to Sports Mole's live commentary of today's Premier League clash between Manchester City and Arsenal at the Etihad.
The defending champions have won 29 of their last 31 league matches at the Etihad, but they have struggled to hit top form thus far this season. They have taken eight points from four league games, however, to sit seventh.
Meanwhile, Arsenal have lost just one of their last 10 Premier League away games and enter the match off the back of a thumping 6-1 win over Southampton last weekend.
Doubts that they could not survive without Robin van Persie have also been quelled with a run of form which has seen them take eight points from four games.
Both encounters between the two clubs finished 1-0 to the home side last season, but City did win 1-0 at the Emirates in a League Cup tie in November.
> Full team news for the match
Please note that kickoff is at 4pm.
5.56pmOur full report of the match can be found here. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for the action and be sure to join us later for La Liga football. Until then!
5.54pmThe result leaves City seventh in the Premier League table. Meanwhile, Arsenal sit in fifth. Both have nine points from five games.
5.52pmSo there we have it. Arsenal score 10 minutes from time to secure a 1-1 draw against Manchester City. The opening period certainly belonged to the Gunners, but City improved after the break.
90 min+2There looks to be one last chance for City as Hart pumps the ball forward, but once more the danger is cleared. Is there time for another goal?
90 minWe will play three minutes of added time.
90 minChance! So nearly a winner for Arsenal as Gervinho strikes an effort from inside the box, but he fires over. Meanwhile, he is replaced by Francis Coquelin.
89 minIt's City with possession at the moment as they look for Balotelli in the Arsenal box, but Mertesacker makes the clearance. End-to-end football at the moment.
87 minIt's Arsenal on the attack at the moment. They can sense something here. What a turnaround it would be.
85 minMeanwhile, change for City as Aguero is replaced by Balotelli. You just know that he is going to be involved.
84 minCHANCE! Oh my word! Double chance for City as Kompany is denied by Mannone, while Aguero fires wide from close range. Wow.
83 minDid anyone see that coming? What a strike from the defender! Is there a winner left in this one?
82 minOh my word! Wonderful strike from Koscielny as he fires it in the top corner from outside the box.
82 minGOAL! Manchester City 1-1 Arsenal (Koscielny)
82 minChance! Wonderful play from Arsenal as Cazorla strikes it from outside the box, but Hart just pushes it wide.
81 minChance! Opportunity on the break for City as Toure feeds Aguero in the box, but Mannone makes a smart save down low.
79 minEnd-to-end football at the moment as both sides look for the decisive goal. Toure drives into the Arsenal half, but is crowded out. Meanwhile, Walcott fires wide of the target down the other end.
77 minAgain it breaks down for Arsenal as Cazorla searches out Gervinho, but his pass is just too long. You just feel that there is another big chance left in this match.
75 minSighter for Giroud as he beats Garcia to possession in the box, but his effort is cleared for a corner - which Kompany heads clear.
73 minArsenal have found it really tough to get behind City this half, maybe the introduction of Walcott could be the key. Just about 20 minutes remaining at the Etihad.
71 minThe double change is made as Walcott and Giroud replace Diaby and Podolski.
71 minWhat was I saying? Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud will soon join us for the away side.
70 minYou just feel that Arsenal need to make a change with 20 minutes remaining. It has all gone a bit stale. Meanwhile, the introduction of Tevez has helped City.
68 minChange for City as Tevez comes on to replace Dzeko. He does not look a happy boy.
67 minSighter for Arsenal as Cazorla finds Gervinho in the box, but his effort is over the crossbar. Finishing isn't his main attribute!
65 minLooks like a bit of a training match at the moment with Arsenal playing keep-ball inside the City half. City are playing on the break at the moment.
63 minNot a great deal happening at the moment truth be told with both teams exchanging spells of possession. There is still a lot of football to be played in this game.
61 minStill Arsenal pass, pass, pass in the City half. But the change of formation from Mancini has closed off all avenues. It will need something special to break this shield down.
59 minArsenal enjoy a rare spell of possession in the second period as they pass and probe around the City box. But they just cannot find the final pass at the moment.
57 minHalf-chance for City as Garcia meets a Silva cross in the box, but his header is straight at Mannone.
55 minChance! Chance for the home side as Silva finds Aguero inside the box, but Gibbs comes across to make the challenge. Arsenal need some ball at the moment.
53 minThe rain is just starting to fall in Manchester. That will only add to the excitement. But it's City who have started the second period the better.
51 minCity are just beginning to force the issue with a host of early corners. They clearly see that as a threat. However, this time it's Diaby who clears the danger.
49 minChance! So nearly a second for City as Silva finds Aguero in the box, but the Argentine's effort from a difficult angle is over the crossbar.
47 minArsenal force their first corner of the second period as Gervinho drives down the left. However, Kompany gets up highest to clear the danger. End-to-end stuff at the moment.
46 minEarly chance for City as Toure drives forward from midfield, but his effort is wide of the post.
46 minHere we go then. City kick us off in the second period. What will this 45 minutes bring?
5.02pmChange for City at the interval with Jack Rodwell on to replace Sinclair. Tactical rather than an injury.
5.02pmHere we go then. Both sets of players are ready for the second period. Can Arsenal respond? They certainly deserve it.
4.59pmFull-time result: Newcastle United 1-0 Norwich City
4.56pmMeanwhile, Queens Park Rangers lead Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 at the break at White Hart Lane. Some turn up there!
4.53pmOur report of the opening 45 minutes of action can be found here. Take a look!
4.50pmJust some statistics to bring you from the opening half. Arsenal have dominated possession with 54% of the ball. Meanwhile, they have had four shots to City's three.
4.47pmSo there we have it. Arsenal dominate the half of football, but enter the break behind following a header from Lescott. City did improve in the latter stages of the half, but it is cruel on Arsenal.
45 minMeanwhile, we will play one added minute at the end of the half.
44 minHalf-chance for Arsenal as Gervinho picks up possession outside the box, but his effort is wide of the post. City appear to be heading for a half-time lead.
42 minChance! So nearly two for City as Dzeko strikes an effort from outside the box, but Mannone pushes it over the crossbar.
41 minWhere on earth did that come from? City just have not been in this match. It is so so cruel on Arsenal.
40 minCity lead and it's Lescott who heads a Silva corner into the back of the net.
40 minGOAL! Manchester City 1-0 Arsenal (Lescott)
39 minBrilliant defending from Gibbs as he steals possession from Sinclair before starting an attack for the Gunners. The England defender has emerged into a really fine player.
37 minCity are just beginning to enjoy a period of possession at the moment. However, Mertesacker remains a strong figure at the back.
35 minNo real atmosphere inside the Etihad at the moment. You can just sense some frustration in the home crowd as their attacks break down time after time.
33 minCity must be happy that it is 0-0 at the moment, they are just not in it. Arsenal force a free kick outside the box as Ramsey is felled by Kompany. However, Cazorla's effort is collected by Hart.
31 minArsenal have control of the midfield here. Make no mistake about that. They force a corner down the left, but Hart is on hand to collect the danger. The pace has just started to quicken in the past few minutes.
29 minChance! Again it's brilliant work from Arsenal as Cazorla finds the run of Gervinho, but Clichy just crowds him out at the vital moment. The attacking intent is all coming from Arsenal.
27 minArsenal continue to create chances as Gervinho finds the run of Ramsey in the box, but his header is dealt with by Hart. We haven't really seen anything from Aguero or Silva thus far.
25 minChance! Brilliant play from Jenkinson as he beats Lescott down the right. He finds Podolski in the box, but the German can only fire over the crossbar.
23 minHalf-chance for Arsenal this time as Diaby strikes a powerful effort from outside the box, but Lescott blocks the danger as we reach the mid-way point of the opening half.
21 minHalf-chance for City as Aguero and Silva attempt to link in the box, but the latter's touch is just too heavy. Mertesacker has made a host of solid interceptions thus far.
19 minIt's all Arsenal at the moment with Gibbs highly advanced down the left, but once more his cross is wayward. City just have not got going thus far.
17 minChance! Wonderful opening for the away side as Ramsey feeds Gervinho with a fine pass, but his touch is far too heavy and Hart collects. What an opportunity that was.
15 minFirst real chance of the match for City as Aguero picks up possession outside the box, but his effort is pushed away by Mannone. Better from the home side.
14 minReally nice football from the away side as Diaby finds Gibbs in the box, but the England defender's cross is cut out. Podolski fumes at the delivery. It should have been so much better.
12 minDiaby has made some start to this match for Arsenal. He is starting to become the player that he should be. Not a great deal happening in the match at the moment.
10 minSighter from the away side as Cazorla strikes an effort from outside the box, but Hart was always comfortable in stopping the danger. Quite a slow start at the Etihad.
8 minAgain it's smart work from Gibbs down the City right, but Kompany steps out of defence to clear the danger. City cannot really keep the ball at the moment.
6 minDecent play from the Gunners as Diaby links with Gervinho in midfield, but the latter's ball to Podolski is just too long. Meanwhile, Dzeko and Aguero are yet to combine in the City attack.
4 minThe match is ever so narrow in the early stages with neither side having any real natural width. It's been Arsenal who have controlled the ball thus far.
2 minBright start from the away side with Ramsey and Diaby both enjoying early possession of the ball. Meanwhile, the Gunners' fans are in good voice early on.
1 minArsenal kick us off on this mild afternoon in Manchester - with Ramsey immediately looking for the run of Gervinho.
3.59pmMeanwhile, we will have a tribute prior to the match following the deaths of two police officers in the Manchester area. Wonderfully observed.
3.58pmHandshakes? Check. Flags exchanged? Check. Both sides have a nice pre-match huddle.
3.56pmHere we go then. Both sets of players are emerging onto the pitch. Will we have any trouble with handshakes in this one? Only between Mancini and Wenger.
3.54pmThat said, today is also a test for Roberto Mancini's side. They have hardly set the place alight thus far this season. They are in need of a performance and three points. Let's see what happens.
3.52pmThere is something different about Arsenal this season. They have lost Van Persie, but there appears to be a better balance to the side. But today is a real test for them.
3.50pmJust a reminder that there is another Premier League match in progress at the moment with Newcastle United leading Norwich City 1-0. Meanwhile, Tottenham Hotspur and Queens Park Rangers will soon kick off.
3.48pmJust looking back to the teams for a moment. Arsenal are without their skipper Thomas Vermaelen, while Olivier Giroud also drops out of the team. Scott Sinclair is a surprise starter for City - I can't quite work that one out.
3.46pmBack to today's match. Regular followers will know what time it is now. Prediction time. I am going for a 2-2 draw this afternoon. Arsenal will come to play that is for certain.
3.44pmLooking back to the earlier game for a moment. Here's a word from Manchester United midfielder Ryan Giggs: "The last three or four years we have come and played better but not got anything, that is the way it goes sometimes. It is always tough against a team like Liverpool to keep the ball well. We didn't keep it well enough but great to see Rafael goal go in and that probably picked us up. Anfield is a tough place to come. Liverpool wanted to put on a performance because of the occasion and they did that. They played well, but we can play better," he told reporters.
3.42pmThose expecting a goal feast today may be disappointed, however, with just six goals scored in the last six league meetings between the two sides. I am expecting more of the same this afternoon.
3.40pmHere's an interesting stat for you: Today's referee is Mike Dean and Arsenal have won just one of the last 14 Premier League matches with him in charge. Spooky? I think he is a Tottenham fan. That can be the only explanation!
3.38pmArsenal began their campaign with back-to-back 0-0 draws with Sunderland and Stoke City, but they have won their last two against Liverpool and Southampton. The Gunners also met City as part of their pre-season programme, when they lost 2-0 to the current league champions.
3.36pmSo, looking at both teams form this season. City began their season with a 3-2 win over Southampton, before drawing with Liverpool and beating Queens Park Rangers. They were held by Stoke City last time out, however, and they have struggled for consistency thus far.
Manchester City: Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Clichy; Garcia, Toure, Silva, Sinclair; Dzeko, Aguero
Arsenal: Mannone; Jenkinson, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Gibbs; Diaby, Arteta, Cazorla, Ramsey; Gervinho, Podolski
3.34pmTEAM NEWS: Sergio Aguero returns to the Manchester City team. However, there is no place for Carlos Tevez or Mario Balotelli.
3.32pmGood afternoon all! Well, what another wonderful weekend of Premier League football we have had. Just incase you missed it - yeah right - Manchester United have just won 2-1 at Anfield. Massive result for them.